|ASCOT HELD AGAIN AS TUFFLEY EARN 1-1 DRAW
Yellamen remain winless in four league matches
Resilient Tuffley Rovers dug deep to thwart ten-man Ascot United as the Yellamen dropped more points in a 1-1 draw on Saturday. Ascot had led through an incredible goal from defender Chris Ellis, but after Elliott Carey’s dismissal the visitors looked increasingly threatening with a man advantage, and duly levelled through substitute Dominik Kent.
The first half was short on clear cut chances, and when one finally arrived ten minutes before the break, visiting ‘keeper Luke Merchant was on hand to thwart the hosts. It looked odds-on that Dan Price would score when clean through, but Merchant stood up well and blocked the lively forward’s effort, before defender Rhys Davies was on hand to block Sheridan Campbell’s attempt to convert the rebound.
Earlier, Price had shot over after ghosting past the defence and setting himself for an effort that warranted more, although Tuffley’s Brett James might have done better with an off-target header after Will Dawes’ cross had spun up off a defender and looped into the penalty area.
The industrious Carey saw a long range shot saved at the second attempt by Merchant just before the half-hour mark after Price and Geoff Kibaki had fashioned the chance, but it was Merchant’s save from Price soon afterwards that ensured parity at half time.
However, it was only three minutes after the restart when Ellis started and ended a devastating breakaway. Ellis ran onto his own headed clearance and powered half of the length of the pitch, played a one-two with Price, and continued his run and slotted past Merchant with the outside of his foot before being mobbed by his team-mates.
At the other end George Lock’s excellent covering challenge denied James when the hosts looked exposed, although James would waste a free header from the resultant corner.
However, Carey’s 60th minute dismissal for a second yellow card left his side with a third of the game to play with ten men, and Kent finally levelled matters when Tuffley broke and James picked out the substitute at the far post, who thumped the ball back across Sam Gray and into the left-hand corner.
James then slid the ball agonisingly wide and saw a point-blank header saved by Gray as Tuffley sought a winner, although incredibly Ellis almost repeated his earlier feat for Ascot with another surging run – this time playing a one-two with Campbell – before firing high and wide of the top right from an almost identical position.
There was still time for Campbell to head wide from another long throw-in from Ellis in the third minute of added time, but it would have been harsh on the visitors who will value the point more than their hosts.
Ascot United: Gray, Lock, Denton, Carey, Bouwers, Ellis, Kibaki, Carlisle (Haworth), Campbell, Price (Regragui), Lalustani (Laflin). Subs unused: Sullivan, Walters